There are many great reasons to look into Christian books for children. The right book can do a lot of good for kids as well as adults. Books can help children understand and process difficult topics, explore the world around them in a healthy way, and spark a passion for learning about the people around them. Here are 12 reasons we think a good book is worth its weight in gold.
12 Reasons Christian Books for Children Can Be Important to Child Development
1. They Can Present Positive Role Models
Kids need good role models; it’s natural for kids to look up to the people who inspire them and want to be like them. Superheroes, athletes, singers, and actors can all become role models to our kids; but so can book characters. By providing good books for our kids to enjoy, we help them develop healthy role models. The Bible is filled with many people who can make excellent role models.
Has your kid ever been made fun of for doing what’s right? Noah can be an example of doing the right thing, even when your peers are trying to make you feel silly for it. His story can help kids remember that doing the right thing pleases God and is always the best choice, even if we don’t see results right away.
Mary is a powerful role model of faith and humility. In the face of scrutiny and possible humiliation, she held on to the faith that God would do everything he had promised.
The simplest answer is sometimes the best one, right? When we’re talking about role models, we have to mention Jesus. There is no greater role model than God himself, who took on our fallen nature to suffer alongside us and put his will under the Fathers’ at every point: even to the point of death.
Christian books for children may not always have Bible characters in them, but since they take inspiration from the Bible and its lessons, the characters present in these books can help reinforce the same positive ideas.
2. They Can Help Develop Character
When kids have role models, a lot of the time they’ll want to be more like the people who inspire them. This can be a really good thing or a not-so-good thing. By filling the bookshelf with positive options, you can give your children a range of characters to choose from and relate to.
If they’re seeing examples of characters treating each other with kindness and respect, it may help them carry that message into their relationships with family and friends.
3. They Teach Courage
The Bible is rich with stories of courage. Esther stood up to the king and risked her life to save her people. Moses had to face his fears and insecurities and go confront Pharaoh back in the land he fled from. Of course, who can forget the story of David and Goliath? If you want a powerful image of bravery, just think of a young shepherd with a sling facing down a ferocious adversary.
While reading to your kids directly from the Bible is great, sometimes Bible stories can be a little hard for very young kids to digest. Christian books for children are made with that in mind and can help kids understand these powerful messages through simpler language and the use of pictures.
4. They Can Teach Determination
It can be all too easy to give up when the going gets tough, but sometimes seeing something through to the end even when it’s hard can be even more rewarding.
When your kid is frustrated at a task like homework, the lessons they’ve learned about determination may help them keep a positive mindset and stick to it. In life, this should help prepare them to face hardships head-on and develop realistic goals.
5. They Establish Virtues Like Humility and Honesty
Sometimes it seems like our culture thrives off of comparing ourselves to others. Kids of all ages can fall into the unhealthy habit of basing their self-worth off of being better at something than someone else. Virtues like humility are meant to teach kids that everyone should be treated with respect and all should remember they have nothing except what they have been given by God. The only thing we “own” is our sin; all our strengths, talents, intelligence, and more are gifts.
Humility can help kids with honesty as well, as it can be tempting to lie to impress friends. If you don’t feel like you have to be better than someone, there’s less of a reason to lie, and it can be liberating for kids to just be themselves and not constantly be trying to impress their peers.
6. They Encourage Love and Kindness
Learning how to love each other can help kids build healthy relationships. Christian books should encourage kids to see love and kindness as much more important than being cool or tough. This can help encourage empathy and discourage children from bullying behaviors.
7. They Can Inspire
Books can help turn discouraged thoughts into, “Well, maybe I could do that after all.” If your child is struggling with self-doubt, maybe they need to see a character facing a similar obstacle and working their way through it. In that way, books can help kids develop problem-solving skills and may help increase their confidence.
8. They Can Help Children Navigate Difficult Life Events
As much as parents hate to think about their kids facing hardship, everyone knows how hard life can be, and we won’t be able to protect our kids from every hard thing that comes their way. What we can do is give them the tools to face these battles.
A good book can help kids escape from their own troubles for a little while, but it can also give them powerful tools to help with real-life situations. When the last page is flipped and the book is closed, they should have something lasting and positive that can be carried with them for a long time to come.
The book of Job can be a tough one to get through; even for adults! The good news is you can find Christian books for kids that are inspired by Job but written with children in mind. To the end, even as Job went through terrible hardships and pain, he stayed focused on God, showing remarkable faith and trust. He asked God some hard questions, but he never turned away.
The thought of something better waiting on the other side of our hardships can be a positive message for kids and can help instill a sense of hope and belief that no matter what they face in life, God is in control and will work all things together for the good of those who love him and are called by his name.
9. They Can Spark Imagination and Creativity
There’s no shortage of books out there that are great for encouraging imagination. These books should also teach kids important lessons about life and how to treat each other. One thing we love about books is that they allow the mind’s eye to explore, even when there are pictures to look at.
When it comes to watching a movie, everything is visually laid out for you. But, when you read a book, you have to mentally “fill in the gaps” between pages. Kids can use their imagination and creativity to bring the book to life in their minds. A book can even help encourage kids to pick up a pencil or crayon and do some creating of their own!
10. They Can Help Kids Identify Emotions and Healthy Ways to Handle Them
Emotions can be tricky for adults to manage, let alone kids who don’t have as much experience with them and may not even recognize what they’re feeling. Books can help teach kids about emotions by showing characters having to process and learn about them. A good book can also help teach them different things to do when they’re feeling these hard emotions.
Kids may see a character learning that sometimes walking away and calming down can help you deal with anger before you get into an argument. Kids who are dealing with loss can learn ways to process their grief and reach out to their loved ones when they need support. There are countless ways books can help kids learn about themselves, and having them just a bookshelf away means your child can turn to them time and time again.
11. They Can Help Develop Healthy Social and Communication Skills
Learning about their own emotions is a good way for kids to also learn about other people’s emotions. Education can help kids when it comes to empathy, so when they don’t understand something they may be more likely to take the time to try and see it from someone else’s perspective. This can also lead to more constructive communication.
12. They Can Teach Kids About Difficult Topics
If you find yourself worrying about how to explain hard topics in a way children can readily understand and handle, you’re not alone, and you don’t have to face it alone either. A thoughtfully written book can help your kids learn about big topics in a healthy way, and the great thing about books is you can read them beforehand to make sure you and the book are on the same page with what you want your kids to be thinking about.
Author Krystle Joy DeGraide has written The Story of You to help teach kids about the miracle of life. If you’d like to learn more about this book, and how it can help your child understand this topic, visit Krystle Joy DeGraide today to order your own copy.